You know that they say: “Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it.” Angie and Gino, from Southern California, made a wish, got what they wished for – and more! The married couple were already living a happy, healthy life with their two sons, but felt that something was missing. What they really wanted then was a baby girl. When it comes down to it, some people are just made for parenthood. Angie and Gino are those people.
When they got married, they knew they wanted to start a family right away. Soon enough, the couple got pregnant with their first child, a boy. Less than two years later, they were pregnant again and welcomed another boy to their growing family. But to feel complete, they wanted a daughter, too. Little did they know that they would go from two to five – just like that!
This is the story of Angie and Gino, whose lives suddenly turned upside down.
Something Was Missing
From the beginning, Angie and Gino took great pride in being a mom and a dad. They enjoyed watching their sons grow up. For these parents, there was nothing better than watching their kids grow into smart, kind-hearted individuals. But that doesn’t mean that they felt complete. For them, something was missing. They believed that adding a girl to the mix would bring the perfect balance to their family.
One day when Angie took a pregnancy test, the couple received some happy news! Angie was thrilled to be pregnant again, and they were eager to figure out whether their third was going to be a boy or girl. Of course, Angie and Gino were just happy to be bringing in another child. But deep down, they were hoping for a girl.
It’s a Girl! X 3
When the time came to find out the sex of baby, the nurse turned to them and said: “It’s a girl!” But the ultrasound was showing something strange. While the technician was performing the ultrasound, his face shifted from excitement to shock. Angie wasn’t having one girl – she was having three! Yes, she was pregnant with triplets.
The couple couldn’t believe what they were seeing on the monitor. Then things got even more unusual. Angie’s doctor noticed that she had two placentas. It meant that two of the girls were sharing one placenta and had actually split from a single egg, making them identical. The third girl, however, formed from an entirely separate egg.
A Rare Occurrence
Two identical twins and a third triplet is indeed a rare occurrence. Angie and Gino never expected any of this. Especially since they conceived naturally, making the pregnancy even rarer. The chances of having triplets are 1 in 4,000. But two of them being identical is not something you see every day.
Since Angie and Gino were naturally only expecting to have one more child, they needed to come to grips with their near future. They were aware now that their lives were about to change drastically. So they started preparing for the girls’ arrival early by hiring a nanny, buying a minivan, and reaching out to friends and family for support.
Different This Time Around
Because both of them had jobs, they spoke with their employers to ensure they could have flexibility. With triplets on the way, Angie’s pregnancy was considered high-risk. During the early stages, her doctor, Dr. Daneshmand, warned them that this time around the pregnancy and delivery would be a lot different than when she had her sons.
The idea of potential complications was in the back of their minds, but they still weren’t prepared for this new way of life. The risk of carrying triplets was getting very real. When she was 26 weeks pregnant, she started experiencing serious complications. Fluid discrepancy suddenly occurred, and it was creating a potentially dangerous situation for Angie and the babies.
A High-Risk Pregnancy
Angie later told Sharp Healthcare, “We saw that the liquid for ‘Baby B’ was too low and for ‘C’ was a little high.” The liquid levels need to be precise when the baby is still in utero. Angie and her doctors needed to take action right away. If the fluid is too high or too low, the girls were at risk of brain hemorrhaging and underdeveloped lungs.
To make sure Angie and her babies were safe, she had to do something she wasn’t planning for. Her day-to-day routine up until now was out of the question. Dr. Daneshmand told Angie that she needed to stay at the hospital for the remainder of her pregnancy.
Wait, Right Now?
Naturally, Angie wasn’t expecting to hear that and was shocked. “I said, ‘Wait, right now?'” she told Sharp Healthcare of the moment the doctor told her. Of course, she wanted to do everything possible to keep her babies safe. But she was only 26 weeks along! With two kids at home, she was understandably very upset that she couldn’t be there with them.
Moving into the hospital was difficult for Angie. Not only did she have to be on strict bed rest, but she also wasn’t in the comfort of her own home. Even worse, she was away from her husband and their two sons. But they made it work. Every day, Gino and the boys would come to visit Mom.
The Nurses Were a Huge Help
The nurses were a big help for Angie. Now that she was in the hospital, it was her new home. She and Gino did what they could to make it comfortable for her. “They’re taken away from everything that’s normal,” Toni Hicks, RN, said about expecting mothers in the hospital. “So, by telling them, ‘You know, I understand that this is really hard for you’ — that’s huge for our patients.”
Angie and Gino were determined to do whatever it took to keep Angie’s spirits high. That meant getting a little creative. One of their new favorite activities: “date night” at the hospital. “This is the date night that we never get at home,” Angie said as they shared dinner in her room.
Staying in Control
When expecting triplets, it’s important to make a detailed birth plan. Although her medical team was on top of her and the babies’ health, they were also aware that the babies could end up in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) due to their small size. Before her due date, Angie and Gino toured the NICU to feel more prepared.
Angie remained positive. Seeing the NICU and having a birth plan made her feel like she was in control, which is so important in times like these when you feel so helpless. “You hear a lot of stories, you know, of triplets who don’t make it or especially of identical twins. The body absorbs one of them,” Angie said.
Babies A, B, and C
“I didn’t see [the NICU] as a sad place, I saw it as a place that was empowering for me.” Angie and her medical team were monitoring the babies daily. During a routine ultrasound, they saw that baby ‘B’ was smaller than baby ‘A’ and baby ‘C.’ Considering babies ‘B’ and ‘C’ were sharing the same placenta, it wasn’t unusual.
But still, it was something they needed to keep monitoring closely. Angie and her medical team had one goal: to make it to 34 weeks. If she could make it to that point, the triplets would have had enough time to develop in the womb. But if they were in there for less than 34 weeks, there was a greater chance of complications.
At 32 Weeks…
Angie got to 30 weeks, and all she could do was take it day by day. Anything was possible at this point. “Anything could happen between now and my due date,” she said. “I could have contractions that I can’t control. We may need to do an emergency C-section. For us, we don’t count the weeks here, we count the days.”
Although they hoped to make it to 34 weeks, Angie went into labor when she reached 32 weeks. It was time for the couple to put their game faces on and get ready for what was ahead. “Three little stars will be born tonight,” Gino said that day. “I have some hard work ahead of me now,” Angie said as they wheeled her into the delivery room.
One by One
Before they knew it, Angie was dilated, and the baby girls were ready to be introduced to the world. Out of safety concerns, the medical team decided that a C-section was the best option. One by one, Angie delivered three baby girls, each weighing just under four pounds. Since the medical team anticipated that she might give birth early on, they were prepared.
The girls were named Daniella, Anabella, and Camilla. Each girl had her own advanced life support team to make sure they were healthy. As soon as each girl was delivered, they were passed through to a room next to the operating room. There, they were assessed, stabilized, and helped with breathing before being moved into the neonatal intensive care unit.
All They Wanted Was to Hold Them
Any mother knows that after carrying a baby in her womb for so long, the first thing she wants to do is hold her infant. It was difficult for Angie not to hold her baby girls after they were delivered. But it was their safety that needed to come first. Since the girls were so small, they needed to go straight to the NICU.
Daniella, Anabella, and Camilla were just four pounds each, so their lungs weren’t entirely developed. It meant that they had some difficulty breathing. The medical team worked quickly to open up the triplets’ lungs so that oxygen would flow. The girls were in good hands, but it was still so hard for Angie and Gino to watch helplessly on the side.
Waiting to See Them
Angie was able to see her baby girls for the first time on a digital camera. It was nowhere near holding them herself, but it was the best they could do for her at the moment. The girls were very small and predisposed to having complications. Alina Harper, one of the RNs who worked with the girls, said: “You know, I really empathize with the parents that have to have their babies and be separated from them.”
But a few hours after Daniella, Anabella, and Camilla were delivered, they were already doing much better. While they needed to stay in the NICU, they were stable and breathing on their own. They were still nowhere near, ready to go home. But at least they could meet their mom and dad!
Time to Meet Mom and Dad
Angie’s heartfelt reaction to finally holding her babies was nothing short of heartwarming. The nurses who watched over the triplets in the NICU were so excited that Angie and Gino were finally meeting their new babies. “I love to see the initial contact between mommy and baby,” Alina Harper said. “I always look for that, that moment that is just theirs that I get to be a part of.”
Although Angie had a long road to recovery after the C-section, she was doing great. The nurses wheeled her into the NICU as Gino walked alongside side them. The couple could barely contain their excitement as they were about to meet their three little angels.
It Feels So Right
The nurse handed Angie one of her girls; she was in complete disbelief. She was so overcome with emotions. She turned to her husband and said: “It feels so right.” She was separated from her girls for a few hours, but it felt like so much longer. “I was only a few hours apart from them, and I already missed them,” Angie said.
“So it feels good to be reunited.” The nurses picked up the babies, as Angie got to hold each of them, one by one. She held them and soothed them back to sleep. The nurses also tucked each of the babies into Gino’s shirt so they could get the benefits of skin-to-skin contact, which is especially beneficial for premature babies.
She Was Listening to Him
During skin-to-skin contact with an infant, your body becomes a natural incubator, helping regulate your temperature to meet the baby’s needs. Many newborn babies don’t open their eyes as soon as they’re born. But when Anabella was resting on her dad’s chest, she opened her eyes looked up at him. When he spoke, her eyes would follow his mouth.
“Look at that, she’s opening her eyes, listening to me,” Gino said. “Beautiful, beautiful feeling.” After a few weeks in the NICU, they were stabilized enough to finally go home. After all this time, their family felt complete! As the girls were growing up, they thrived and developed their own personalities. Before Angie and Gino knew it, their girls were turning six!
Watching Them Grow
The first six years of the girls’ lives went by in an instant. Being a parent isn’t easy. Now think about having five kids – and three are the same age! But Angie and Gino were great at making it work. Their commitment is to put their family first. They make it look easy, but raising a large family is no walk in the park!
For Angie and Gino, their life is “fun chaos.” The triplets are growing up next to their older brothers. “It’s truly a dream come true to have them come into my life,” Angie said.
If you enjoyed this story, read on for another touching journey of one mother when she overcame the odds to have miracle triplets…
Mom of One Gets Pregnant
Becki-Jo Allen and her boyfriend Liam Tierney were living with their daughter, Indiana, in Liverpool, England, when they were planning on expanding their little family. 23-year-old Becki-Jo announced that she was pregnant, and almost immediately felt that something was off. From the beginning, she experienced extreme headaches and nausea.
This time around, it was a lot stronger than how it was with Indiana. Becki-Jo and Liam went to the doctor for an early checkup, waiting nervously for the ultrasound results. They never predicted the surprise that lay in store for them. Becki-Jo was carrying three babies inside her belly! She and Liam were stunned and relieved at the same time.
Out of the Blue
“It was the biggest shock of my life!” Becki-Jo recalled. “We haven’t got any triplets in the family, so it came completely out of the blue.” The fact that they conceived naturally and that Becki-Jo was so young, made carrying triplets even rarer. Her pregnancy grew more complicated as time went on.
Although it became a bit easier for a little while, the couple got a scare at week 31, when Becki-Jo started to have contractions. While the babies were healthy, they were still tiny and not ready for birth. 31 weeks is just over seven months, and most pregnancies last around 38 weeks. Liam had to rush Becki-Jo to their local hospital, where doctors rushed to perform an emergency C-section.
Roman, Rocco, and Rohan
Fortunately, all three boys, Roman, Rocco, and Rohan, survived the emergency delivery. But, they couldn’t meet their mommy just yet since they were immediately rushed to intensive care. The boys’ weights were all under five pounds. Rocco weighed only three pounds and five ounces, Roman was three pounds and six ounces, and Rohan was the heaviest, at three pounds and ten ounces.
As is well known, twins and triplets have higher health risks after birth. They can potentially suffer from birth complications and congenital disabilities, which can result in life-threatening conditions. The triplets stayed in the NICU for six weeks, where they were consistently monitored for heart rate, respiratory rate, temperature, and blood pressure.
Finally Going Home
Premature babies require extra care while their bodies catch up with the developments that they missed while in the womb. The family visited the three boys, but wires and monitors were covering the babies’ faces. But soon enough, the babies were allowed to be taken home. Their journey didn’t end there…
The triplets went home safely with their mom and dad after six weeks in the hospital. Becki-Jo and Liam were busy setting up the triplets’ room and stocking up on products to welcome their new babies. The couple assumed that all the surprises were over. But on the first night back home, Becki-Jo panicked when Roman stopped breathing.
Identical or fraternal?
Thankfully, it was a temporary occurrence and, ultimately, a one-time ordeal. The triplets have remained healthy ever since. As if that wasn’t enough for the young parents, strangers on the street started pointing out something else! The couple kept getting stopped on the street by strangers who said how similar the boys looked.
Appearing similar is common for triplets, as most triplets are fraternal (not identical). But sometimes, one of the two eggs will split, and two of the triplets look more similar than the third. Becki-Jo and Liam struggled to tell the three boys apart. Becki-Jo swabbed the babies’ cheeks and sent them to a lab for a DNA test. Were they identical or fraternal?
One in 200 Million
So, why were the baby boys so hard to tell apart? Well, it’s because they all came from one egg! The single egg split up into three separate eggs, so all three turned out to be identical. At first, the doctors told Becki-Jo that the triplets were fraternal. But, doctors can be wrong sometimes.
Multiple sources state that the chance of having identical triplets is anywhere from 1 in 60,000 to 1 in 200 million! The chances that Becki-Jo would have identical triplets was close to impossible! This genetic phenomenon was as much a surprise to the doctors as it was for Becki-Jo and Liam. Their triplets are a once-in-a-lifetime wonder.
Multiple births, in which the mother gives birth to more than one baby, occurs 1 in 67 times. Even then, most of the time, they’re fraternal. In Becki-Jo’s case, one egg split into two, and then the second one broke again. The chance of an egg separating into two is 1 in 250, and this happened twice with her boys.
Rocco, Rohan, and Roman share the same DNA – blood type, hair color, and eye color. But they’ll each have different teeth marks and fingerprints. They will also develop different personalities and grow up with their own talents and lives. Their environment will cause each one to branch out in his own way.
So, how do we tell them apart?
Their Trick to Tell Them Apart
Despite the triplet’s looking totally identical, Becki-Jo and Liam eventually came up with a way to tell their boys apart. Becki-Jo said, “They’ve all got dark birthmarks between their eyebrows, but Roman’s is slightly darker than the others, and Rohan has got a birthmark on his leg as well. But they all have completely different personalities.”
According to the parents of four, Rohan is the one who shouts the most, Rocco tends to go with the flow, and Roman hates to share his toys! The parents learned to distinguish between their sons. But raising identical triplets did not come easily to these young parents. Becki-Jo explained her journey on her Instagram page…
The Biggest Challenge of Her Life
On her Instagram, Becki-Jo shared what it’s like to mother four kids, three of them identical. She said that mothering these triplets has been one of the biggest challenges of her life. Fortunately, the little brothers have had no major health issues since their first night home after intensive care. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t pose challenges.
As a mother of four, Becki-Jo has to struggle with the day-to-day stuff, like running errands around town. She stated that people would often stop her when she was with the boys to discuss the triplets. Becki-Jo seems to be a wonderful mother. Before giving birth to Indiana, Becki-Jo wanted to train as a neonatal nurse.
A Single Mother
Her passion to be a neonatal nurse only increased after having her triplets. After spending six weeks in the NICU, Becki-Jo knew that it would be the place she wanted to work in. Liam does not live with Becki-Jo, though. He spends his time helping his sister Laura, but he comes over to visit and offer support.
Becki-Jo is basically raising all four children as a single mother. It’s amazing to think that she does it mostly alone. When you think of the cost of raising triplets, it’s even more shocking. On top of her caring for her first child, Becki-Jo faced the unbelievable task of caring for three new babies at once.
All the Diapers!
The triplets went through five packs of wet wipes and 130 diapers each week! That’s 20 wet wipe packages and 520 diapers per month! Becki-Jo also goes through four packs of formula and runs the washing machine about three times a day. The triplets take about 130 naps a week, combined. Luckily for Becki-Jo, her daughter Indiana hasn’t been jealous since the triplets came home.
Indiana fell in love with her new brothers as soon as she met them. At six years old, she helps her mom whenever she could. Despite the cost and the chaos, Becki-Jo loves each of her children and cares for them as best as she can.
Helping Out on Instagram
Becki-Jo’s Instagram has over 64,000 followers who just love to see babies grow. She seems to embrace the attention rather than avoid it. Becki-Jo hosted “Ask Me a Question” events on her Instagram, with live stories, and happily responding with parenting advice and photos of her daily life. From handling tantrums to caring for the triplets, Becki-Jo is glad to be of help.
While Becki-Jo faces a unique challenge, she isn’t the only one. In 2014, the Daily Mail showed how one mother, Karen Gilbert, painted her triplet’s toenails different colors to tell them apart. Pretty creative! Kerry Lyons, with three sons, writes articles on how to care for triplets. Now, Becki-Jo contributes to the hub of advice.
Birthdays are Hectic
Birthday parties are pretty unique in Becki-Jo’s home. Roman, Rocco, and Rohan share their presents, balloons, cake, and party celebrations. Luckily, big sister Indiana helps out with decorations and gifts. The whole family comes together to make the triplet’s birthdays as special as possible. The boys still live a normal life, though.
From sibling fights to report cards to going to the beach, Roman, Rocco, and Rohan live the lives all young boys dream of. Becki-Jo experiences the privilege of watching these identical triplet’s “firsts.” It’s been a few years since they were born, and onlookers are no less intrigued. The future is bright for her and Angie and Gino’s triplets. We wish them all the best!